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Squatting Power Part 6: Advanced Lower-Body Training



Posted in: Training Articles
By John Davies | Feb 22, 2007



In this session of Squatting Power, we'll continue to expand your training development and bring you a classic session that involves a wide selection of pushing, pressing and squat demands. This workout would typically be done mid-week, with roughly 48 hours between weight training sessions.

You will be making use three "Focus Lifts" performed for 4 sets each of 6 repetitions with a loading that varies between 40 percent to 65 percent of maximal effort and 35 to 45 seconds of rest between each set. It must be stated emphatically that this load isn't to be lifted "lightly" but with intense, mind-numbing speed and correct posture at all times.

Focus lifts
1. Split Jerk The Split jerk is one of the most important lifts in developing a powerful vertical jump and considered one of the six "focus" lifts within Renegade TrainingTM. While it is a total body movement that develops the shoulders, back, the trunk and powerful legs, it is rarely performed in commercial gyms today. Though it is often maligned as a complicated lift, when learned right the first time it isn't that difficult. It can and should be used. Amongst the myriad of keys to watch in this exercise, I wish to stress is to use a correct training load to ensure that proper posture is maintained and movement is generated correctly. The key, if you want to call it such, may just be to stay light enough that posture is maintained. In performing the Split Jerk, start with good upright posture. The chest is "proud" and the weight is lifted with an explosive movement generated from powerful leg drive. I prefer to perform it with the bar resting behind my head on my shoulders as I begin the lift as this is typically easier to learn. Initiate the movement by first performing the counter-movement of dipping down slightly then driving vigorously upward with the legs, simultaneously extending your arms overhead and split your legs in a lunge position with both feet pointing straight ahead. Straighten the lead leg, then drive forward to square the feet up and complete the lift.
Perform 4 sets of 6 reps (3 per leg) at 40-65% of 1 rep maximum effort with rests of 35-45 seconds between sets. For additional benefit on lower body development and power, wear a loaded XvestTM when performing the lift.

2. Hi-Box Step Up
This movement is one of the best exercises you'll ever find for leg development. In fact it is so difficult that in most photos you'll see being used they are being performed incorrectly with an obvious push off the incorrect leg and poor torso angle. For greater glute development the box is set up so that with your lead leg planted on the top of the box and your base foot is off its heels, the lead thigh is parallel to the ground. For greater quadriceps emphasis box height should be lowered. Again as I noted, rarely is this exercise performed without cheating and to avoid jerking upwards by using the base foot, squeeze the toes of the plant leg and drive upwards by pushing the plant foot "through" the box.
Perform 4 sets of 6 reps (3 per leg) at 40-65% of 1 rep maximum effort with rests of 35-45 seconds between sets

3. Bench Press
While the Bench Press has evolved into quite possibly the most common lift in most training environments it is one that also consistently done incorrectly and often dangerously. While lying flat on your back on a weight bench, your feet flat and firmly planted the floor, tucked underneath you such as you feel tight if not loaded and ready to "drive" off through the Bench Press. To begin the movement, firmly grasp the bar and intensely pinch your rear delts. Your grip width should vary from shoulder width to one in which the elbow-to-wrist joint is 90 degrees to the bar at the bottom of the lift. Disengage the bar from the rack with the help of a training partner/spotter and "pull it down" with your lats under control to your chest at nipple level. It is extremely important to use a spotter as it is near impossible to maintain your correct lifting position by bringing the weight out of the racks yourself. As you perform the lift keep your elbows in tight and at no time allow the bar to bounce off your chest. As the bar touches your chest, drive it upward, pushing the bar off in an explosive manner. In the proper set up you will feel like you are pushing the bar away from you as you drive your back into the bench. Perform 4 sets of 6 reps at 40-65% of 1 rep maximum effort with rests of 35-45 seconds between sets Bench Press is not just an upper body exercise. When done properly, you activate leg drive, core stabilization, back, chest, shoulders and triceps. Coach Jim Massaro, Masters level Renegade Coach 1. "Diamonds, the return to honor and glory" Renegade Style Productions
Supplemental lifts
Each of these movements are performed with 3 sets each of varying rep range for a total of 12 sets of supplemental exercises. Rest interval is a strict 45 seconds between each set.
1. Olympic Good Morning Along with the Good Morning / Squat this is my favorite form of Good Mornings but equally rarely taught in written form because of the relative difficulty to describe. Additionally this is a mind-numbing explosive lift and photos do not do it justice. However that being said, with the bar on your back and push buttocks back till a neutral back position and then violently thrust the hips up and forward, coming off your toes and you drive up to the ceiling with power. Repeat for sets of 3 at approximately 90% of maximum effort.
2. Bulgarian Squat Remember to pay very great attention to detail as set-up is crucial in this movement to get the desired effect. In a wide split lunge and place top of back foot on box (roughly 12 to 18 inches in height). The shin of your lead leg should be perpendicular to ground when in deep Squat position thus emphasizing glute and hams. Squat down till rear knee is near contact to ground and repeat for sets of 3 per leg at approximately 90 percent of max effort.
3. Cuban Press I find the best medium to perform the Cuban Press is with the Iron Woody bands. They offer a perfect resistance as well, can be adapted for any strength level as well as being transportable. Holding bands in front, pinch rear delts tight, lift elbows up high till shoulder to elbow joint is parallel to ground. From that position lift weight / band up such that elbow to wrist is perpendicular. Perform 3 sets of 12 reps at 70-75% with 45 seconds rest.

4. Internal External Rotation
Once again using the Iron Woody Fitness band for the Internal External rotation. Seated in a wide straddle position, with bands wrapped around feet, pull elbows back and rotate elbow to hand joint such that it is perpendicular to the ground. Perform 3 sets of 12 reps at 70-75% with 45 seconds rest.
At the conclusion of this session, you'll want to use the classic postural holds found in Squatting Power Part 4. Follow this training day, along with the balance of the Squatting Power series, and watch you results quickly add up as we move along the progression. If you've enjoyed your results so far, just wait till you see what we have in store for you next.

Supplementation Tips
Protein: In addition to a well balanced diet, a high-quality protein supplement such as NytroWhey Extreme is a necessary staple.

ProSource Omega-1250: Omega's are essential for fat metabolism, muscular recovery and many immunity building traits.

Phosphatidytalserine: A powerhouse nutrient, it significantly improves muscular recovery, known to improve cognitive processes and even assist in the reduction of stress. This is an absolute must-have supplement.

Acetyl-L-carnitine: Known to improve fat metabolism and assist in recovery from strenuous exercise, there has been enormous research on acetyl-L-carnitine as a neurotransmitter.

Alpha-lipoic-acid: This is a powerful antioxidant that helps speed muscular recovery, decrease fat storage as well as treatment for age related issues.
 
BCAAs: I've been using the building blocks of muscular growth, leucine, isoleucine and valine, for nearly twenty years now and finally, after all this time, it seems like the band wagon for branched-chain amino acids is building. Amazing how that happens but typical consumption of BCAA's on non-training days is recommended is .075 grams per bodyweight spread evenly between meals in 5 grams servings, while on training days the dosage is roughly twice that amount, with additional servings before and after training and prior to bed.


Missed Part 1 of this series? Read it here. Missed Part 2 of this series? Read it here. Missed Part 3 of this series? Read it here. Missed Part 4 of this series? Read it here. Missed Part 5 of this series? Read it here.

Editors Note Training Renegade Style is the most demanding style of training available but it produces a common theme -- champions. Champions who stand above the rest and are ready to take on all challengers. Are you ready for greatness or do you just want to be a part of the pack? Find out about the ultra-secret, yet simple diet and supplement plan that Renegade athletes make use of at http://www.prosource.net/content/articles/simplicity-part-1.aspx
John Davies, Founder Renegade Training Chat Live with Coach Davies in the Renegade Training forums.



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